Unlawful routes for transporting petroleum merchandise have been recognized in two native authorities areas of Cross River State.
Chairman, Unbiased Petroleum Entrepreneurs Affiliation of Nigeria (IPMAN), Cross River Chapter, Mr Robert Obi disclosed this when the group paid a courtesy go to to Mr George Ene-Ita, the brand new Operations Controller, Division of Petroleum Assets (DPR), Cross River Workplace.
The Chairman added that they had been informed as an affiliation to not take petroleum merchandise to retailers that had been 20 kilometres to the border which they obeyed however that petroleum merchandise are continually smuggled to these retailers and the neighbouring nations.
“These routes akin to those in Akpabuyo and Ikom LGAs have turned to smuggle paths; whereas the true entrepreneurs who do reliable enterprise are informed to not take merchandise to those retailers, smugglers, take merchandise by these routes even with the large presence of Customs Officers.
The chairman lamented that the method of being a petroleum product marketer and getting a DPR licence was enormous and costly including that it was an anomaly for one to get all of the certification solely to see one other open an unlicensed and uncertified station beside yours and is promoting.
He additionally complained of the dearth of provide of Twin Objective Kerosene (DPK) and Automotive Gasoline Oil (AGO) to the Nigerian Nationwide Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC) depot in Calabar however to personal tank farms within the state leaving them with just one product, Premium Motor Spirit (PMS).
Based on him, the NNPC tanks can be found in Calabar however must be cleaned up and barely recalibrated to take DPK and AGO, “We had complained earlier and the Pipeline and Merchandise Advertising Firm (PPMC) promised to ship us merchandise however was informed that the Calabar depot doesn’t have sufficient storage facility.
“The Chairman of PPMC referred to as and informed me to interact with the Managing Director, Storage which I did final 12 months earlier than the arrival of COVID-19 however up until now, we nonetheless have points with the tanks and are nonetheless not receiving the merchandise though PPMC is able to ship us merchandise.
“We even have the problem of personal tank farms getting PMS from PPMC and promoting to us at N162 per litre; if a marketer buys PMS at N162 per litre from the tank farms, how a lot do you count on him to promote in his gas station.
“To make issues worse, officers of DPR will come to clamp down on us that we’re promoting above the authorised pump worth. The correction must be accomplished on the tank farms and never the gas stations as a result of they’re placing us out of enterprise,” he mentioned.
“It’s irritating that these of us who’re registered entrepreneurs and pay heavy taxes simply to get DPR licence aren’t allowed to do enterprise due to the so many complicated circumstances. DPR mustn’t simply be there to run after and penalise IPMAN members however should additionally look into their real considerations and help them to stay in enterprise,” Obi mentioned.
Responding, Ene-Ita mentioned IPMAN was an essential affiliation within the oil sector and has invested a lot in its companies, so, it was essential for DPR to help it to fulfill its goals and aims of guaranteeing the supply of petroleum merchandise to most people.
He mentioned though, a number of the points raised by IPMAN don’t fall throughout the purview of DPR, it was essential to see how they could possibly be resolved as a result of if IPMAN goes out of enterprise, DPR gained’t have a lot to do.
“It’s in our greatest curiosity that IPMAN stays not simply in enterprise however profitably in enterprise. Though a couple of of the problems aren’t inside our jurisdiction, we are going to take them earlier than the administration, in order that, at that stage, there shall be an institutional assembly level amongst related companies.
“Additionally, we are going to have interaction our safety companies to help in curbing these unlawful cross border smuggling of Petroleum merchandise,” Ene-Ita mentioned.